After talks in Downing Street, the British and Irish leaders have flown to Belfast to tackle a crisis threatening Northern Ireland’s fragile government.
The row between rival parties in the power-sharing administration there is over the transfer of police and justice powers from London.
“We believe that it is right for Northern Ireland to move forward in this way now. And we believe that together we can assist the completion of these talks,” said Brown, before setting off for Belfast.
The leaders’ last-minute decision to intervene personally suggests the political situation in Northern Ireland is close to breaking point.
Sinn Fein demands the transfer of power take place as soon as possible, accusing Peter Robinson’s Democratic Unionist Party of stalling, which it denies.
Robinson has temporarily stood aside as the province’s First Minister amid a scandal involving his wife, further putting pressure on Northern Ireland’s executive.
British and Irish leaders in Belfast for crisis talks